the riders: famine, pt. 2

The idea of people knowing what they wanted was the only thing I thought of in those days. There were all sorts of things they kept asking for--free distribution of the resources I'd bought up, or at least open access to it. Sometimes they just asked for more than they needed to feed their families, or refused to pay the prices we were asking. As if they didn't understand that this was a fucking valuable thing. You don't give it away for nothing. We could not afford generosity--others would starve. All because they thought they knew best what they wanted.

Meanwhile the nations that remained kept buying the new products we were putting out, and Famine managed to secure some luxuries for those of us still working at the lab. She soothed some of my fears that we didn't have enough to feed everyone--it's important that we be fair, she said. We can't afford to play favorites. What if we picked the wrong people? What if we helped the wrong people survive the apocalypse?

She was the first person to use the word. I would have happily spent the rest of the end with her if I could, but business called, and, content that she could manage the distribution of the remaining food supply, I had to book a flight out to meet someone that War described over the phone as "a very dear friend."

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